After making himself unavailable for international duty after sitting on the bench at Euro 2012, Darron Gibson is looking forward to re-launching his career in the green jersey.
The departure of Giovanni Trapattoni as boss hastened a return to the fold for the Everton player ahead of the World Cup qualifiers against Germany and Kazakhstan.
“It’s great to be back and I’m enjoying the week, but it feels like I’m starting all over again and I have to prove myself once more to the fans," explained Gibson to reporters at the Irish training camp in Malahide.
The player admitted it was tough watching from afar the previous games in this qualifying campaign.
He said: "It was tough to stay away, but it was my decision and I stuck to it.
"I felt I should have got the opportunity to play in the Euros, but I am delighted to be back in. Hopefully I’ll get my chance on Friday to show what I can do."
Noel King has stepped into the breach as Ireland manager and Gibson has spoken positively about the Dubliner’s contribution so far.
“Noel knows his stuff. He has worked a lot on tactics and is trying out different formations. The training sessions are brilliant and there is a confident mood in the squad.
"Playing against the Germans is a big test. They will have a lot of the ball and I think we will need to pack the midfield and close the space down. Noel has plans in place."
"I felt I should have got the opportunity to play in the Euros"
During his exile, Gibson made an issue about Paul Green’s inclusion in the Irish midfield – the Leeds player was a Trapattoni favourite.
However, Gibson played down talk of any strained relations with the Leeds player.
"Me and Paul Green get on well. I didn't say anything bad about him, I just said I thought I should have been playing ahead of him."
Live television coverage of Germany v Republic of Ireland from 19:00 on Friday 11 October on RTÉ Two and RTÉ.ie (ROI only). Live radio coverage on Game On from 19:00 on RTÉ 2fm and RTÉ.ie (Worldwide).